by Ernest Hernandez
Makati survived a huge third quarter push from Bacoor and score a 71-60 win in the Metro League U17 Division at the Hagonoy Sports Complex in Taguig City on Tuesday.
Leading for most of the first half, the Junior Skyscrapers suddenly lost steam in the third period, letting the Junior Strike come back and take a 45-44 lead late in the period.
Makati restored order at the end of the third and finally pulled away for good in the fourth quarter.
Ryan Celis made 18 points, five rebounds, four assists, and seven steals for the Junior Skyscrapers, who tied their victims at 2-1, eventually forcing a three-way tie at the top of the Southern Division standings with Pasay, which won earlier against Las Piñas.
Jericho Mateto added 15 points, 13 rebounds, one assist, and one block.
Rion Porcadas made 15 markers, five boards, one dime, and four steals off the bench for the Junior Strike, whose unbeaten run was snapped at two.
Makati 71-R. Celis 18, Mateto 15, Ilagan 9, Isidro 8, Raz 7, Quijano 6, L. Celis 6, Velasco 2, Mamuad 0, Sulit 0, Parane 0
Bacoor 60-Porcadas 15, Melencio 12, Torrijos 9, Villarin 7, Pecho 6, Cornand 4, Malabanan 4, Bautista 2, Torno 1, Gutierrez 0, Buhay 0, Aranilla 0, Rocha 0, Corrales 0
Quarterscores: 19-13, 33-24, 47-45, 71-60